2006 NAMM Update: Akai Debuts New MPC 2500 Music Production Center

akai mpc 2500NAMM 2006 Winter Show: Akai Professional introduced the MPC2500 Music Production Center.

The MPC2500 is the successor to the company’s highly acclaimed MPC2000XL. Featuring an inviting user interface, great-feeling velocity and pressure sensitive pads, twin onboard effects processors with a send for outboard effects, Q-Link controllers, plus 10 outputs and an S/PDIF digital output, the MPC2500 Music Production Center elevates the MPC Series to an entirely new level.

As a 32-voice drum/phrase sampler with up to 128 MB of RAM and extensive editing controls, the MPC2500 makes ease of operation a priority. Sample recording takes place at the instrument’s Main page (eliminating the need to dig through confusing nested menus) and editing provisions are extensive. The instrument’s Chop-Shop function can analyze a drum loop, detect the various beats within, and map the various segments to the pads—enabling users to create drum kits. With its Patched Phrase function, sampled phrases can be automatically synchronized to the sequencer’s tempo without altering the sample’s pitch, and the Continuous Sample Track enables long sampled phrases to be played along with sequenced performance data. Further, samples can be reversed and time stretched.

The MPC2500’s control, effects, and interface capabilities excel. The four Q-Link controllers (two sliders/two knobs) facilitate extensive real-time control and, when combined with the Audio Input Thru function, input signals can be manipulated on the spot. The MPC2500 provides 4-pole filters (twin 2-pole filters) for each of the instrument’s 32 voices, and the two onboard effects processors make it easy to add reverbs, delays, and other effects. Since internal sounds reside in flash memory, they can easily be swapped for new sounds via compact flash cards (32 MB card included) or the optionally available CD-ROM drive. Similarly, users can also expand their onboard sound palette by adding an optional 2.5-inch hard drive.

The MPC2500 sports a 100,000 note / 64 track MIDI sequencer that can be assigned to four separate MIDI outputs for a total of 64 independently addressable MIDI channels. Song mode supports 20 songs, with 250 steps per song, and the unit’s grid editing screen for the drum track makes music creation and editing an intuitive process. With its 240 x 64 dot angled, backlit LCD display, keeping track of one’s work is easy. Combined with 10 analog outputs plus an S/PDIF digital output, the MPC2500 facilitates nearly unlimited possibilities for exercising control over the various sound elements the unit produces—making it a “must have tool” for both stage and studio use.

The MPC2500 Music Production Center is available now for a suggested retail price of $2999.

More information is available at the Akai Pro site.

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